Adam Lallana's thigh injury is a significant setback for Jurgen
Klopp as he seeks to strengthen Liverpool's Champions League
qualification chances with victory over Everton in Saturday's
Lallana is expected to be out for a month, having suffered the
injury during the closing stages of England's 2-0 victory over
Lithuania at Wembley last Sunday.
The former Southampton midfielder been one of the most reliable
performers this season in a Liverpool side who have lacked
consistency, and his absence will be felt keenly as Reds boss
Klopp attempts to secure a top-four Premier League finish.
They sit fourth going into the weekend's fixtures, with a
four-point advantage over Manchester United in fifth.
United do have two games in hand, but that is no guarantee that
they will make up the gap, as they have matches at Manchester
City, Arsenal and Tottenham before the end of the season.
Liverpool's form going into the international break was
encouraging; home wins over Arsenal and Burnley were followed by
a draw at Manchester City, and they will start favourites against
Everton, who have not won at Anfield since September 1999.
Sadio Mane's goal in the seventh minute of stoppage time gave
Klopp's team a 1-0 victory in the reverse fixture at Goodison
Park in December, and a win on Saturday would secure a first
league double over their local rivals since 2011-12.
Liverpool will be helped by the likely return of Jordan Henderson
after more than a month out with a foot injury, with the England
midfielder having resumed full training during the international
Klopp is in no doubt that Champions League qualification is in
"In this moment, we should only think about how we can do it," he
"Would it be a disappointment if we don't reach it? Yes because
we think we should qualify for it.
"Is it possible that we don't qualify? Yes because of the league,
because of the opponents and all that stuff.
"But it is our big target, of course. We want to do everything to
- Horrific -
Everton have injury problems of their own as they make the short
trip to Anfield without defender Seamus Coleman, who broke his
leg in horrific circumstances while playing for the Republic of
Ireland last week.
Coleman is likely to be out for between nine and 12 months after
his tibia and fibula bones were broken in an awful challenge by
Wales defender Neil Taylor during the 0-0 draw in Dublin.
Images of the challenge showed just how bad the injury was,
although the Everton right-back had successful surgery last
Saturday, and the club are confident that he will make a full
That was not the only injury setback for Everton during the
international break, with midfielder James McCarthy suffering a
recurrence of his persistent hamstring problems while with the
Republic of Ireland, and having to be withdrawn from the side to
face Wales shortly before kick-off.
Despite those problems, Ronald Koeman's side are in good spirits,
lying seventh, just six points behind Liverpool, having lost only
once in 12 league matches since the two sides last met.
Everton have not beaten Liverpool home or away since October
2010, enduring a run of 13 derbies in all competitions without
However, Koeman is optimistic, saying: "There has been a big
difference in many years in derby results, but I think we are now
more close to Everton beating Liverpool.
"We had a good game at home and were only defeated by a goal in
the 97th minute.
"The team will be ready on Saturday to give Liverpool a big